Volunteers help woman who lost everything in a fire
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - A fire destroyed Patricia Silva's Gulfport home and almost everything inside of it. Silva tried to salvage what she could and put some of the rubble in bags on the front lawn.
After three months, her life is in ruins. She's homeless, yet has a mortgage bill to pay. And now the city has asked Silva to clean up the lot.
"Basically I have lived off my credit card for the last month, two months," Silva said. "Yesterday, I found out it was maxed out.
For a while, Silva was living in a tent, then in her car, and is now moving from couch to couch. Despite the devastation she's endured since the blaze, Silva is feeling upbeat.
"I just feel blessed, you know, just blessed, blessed, blessed, blessed," Silva said.
Disability Connection, a nonprofit, found out about Silva and recruited the community to help her pick up the pieces and clean the lot.
"We need to all come together and support our friends and neighbors because none of us know when it might be ourselves," Founder of Disability Connection Janie O'Keefe said.
The non-profit recently started a new program called 'community assistance' that helps veterans, seniors, or those with disabilities with house repairs, food and finding a job. And unbeknownst to O'Keefe, the help she recruited was very special to Silva.
"She has just brought every aspect of my life into this situation," Silva said.
Silva is a Navy Reservists and a graduate of a Job Corp. The volunteers helping demolish her home are the Biloxi Veteran Warriors Group and students from the Gulfport Job Corps.
"I'm not worried, Silva said. "God did all of this, you know. He can take care of the rest."
After one more day's work, the volunteers will have the lot cleared and the foundation ready for whenever Silva rebuilds. If you would like to help Disability Connection with a project like this one, they are always looking for volunteers. Just call (228) 604-4020.
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